Every individual who gets his own place spends more than 90% of his budget on getting the right interior. Matching curtains, matching carpets, everything that goes with the design of the place. The four walls consume too much attention, leaving none for the ceiling. With all the customization focused on interiors, one forgets how important is that one thing which every room has to have, fans. It is the last thing on every list, yet the same designs without a single twist. And at the end, one is left with very small amount to spend on it, leading them to go for the usual dull designs. While still allowing you to go fan shopping in the end, Fanzart provides designer ceiling fans at an affordable price.
With their headquarters in Bangalore, Fanzart operates on a PAN India basis with almost 50 showrooms across the cities. They have already made their mark beyond the boundary in Nepal, Middle East and Sri Lanka, with their roots spreading in France and Nigeria. Their designer fans range from Vintage Wooden Collection to Modern High-tech Collection. Individuals would soon be able to customize it as per their preference.
With an aim to revolutionize the one thing all places have in common, and bringing about a change in our perspective about fans Mr. Tarun Lala has been climbing the ladder of success and dreams of being the go-to fan brand in India. With a never-ending range of designer fans, they indulge in the process right from the start making sure that the designs of the product suit the Indian conditions. Here is an exclusive interview of Mr. Tarun, with Inventiva,to walk us through the journey of Fanzart.
1. What is the source of inspiration behind the name of your venture, FANZART?
This was the first time we were bringing the element of Art into Fans. The only way those 2 words were coming together was either ARTIFAN or FANZART. So, we went with FANZART
2. Who all are your target audience/clients?
We initially targeted HNIs and UHNIs. Now we target the Luxury and Premium residential segments and now introduced a B2B segment which consists of restaurants, hotels, retails stores, commercial offices etc. We have also introduced speciality fans that address back offices and manufacturing units.
3. Your current operations are located in which regions and Where are you based?
We are Headquartered at Bangalore, we are present pan India with over 50 showrooms across the cities. Also, either through partners, showrooms or projects we address the markets of Nepal, SriLanka and the Middle East. We have very recently introduced the brand in France and Nigeria.
4. What problems does your venture resolve? What are your products or services?
Our products are Designer Fans and specially fans.
The fans, unlike other interior products had not evolved, we facilitated that transition and we have changed the perception about how the fan and works. This evolution is both Aesthetic as well as Functional.
5. Would you like to Share the idea or story behind the foundation of Fanzart?
My parents were re modelling their home and were looking at a lot of beautiful interior option but couldn’t find a designer brand in ceiling fans. They were amazed that fans are present on the blueprint of every house in the country and surprised that there was such a huge gap in the market.
Consequently, they were on vacation and happened to go to a Mexican restaurant in San Diego, that is where he discovered a fan in the open area over the tables and the chairs were around it. With his inquisitive nature, he started looking around to find the name of the brand and started looking for the dealers. The supplier happened to be in LA and visited their showroom there, where, he was blown away by the range of designer fans they had displayed. So, he connected with the manufacturer in Taiwan, visited them hit up on a collaboration.
This not only solved the problem of not being able to use designer fans at home, but also bridged the gap in the market.
6. Do you face any rivalry and how do you differentiate yourself from them?
In terms of rivalry, there are existing store brands who also have imported designer fans after we have shown the proof of concept that designer fans work well in India.
There are a couple of major differences. One being, the other people who import it are mail store brands whereas we are a product brand. What that means is that, the only look at specific demographics where they are already present leading to import in smaller quantities to add incremental revenue to their already existing revenue, thereby not getting involved right from the start with the products. Due to this they face major problems in integration of the product and support.
Here, as Fanzart is a product brand, we here involved right from the start making sure that the designs of the product both aesthetic and functional are made specifically to suit Indian conditions. We ensure that the products are also specific to the premium and luxury tastes.
In terms of support, we have also been also to provide the customer with End-to-end support to our all clients, keeping the quality and the reliability of service at its best.
7. How do you identify your co-founder? Would you like to tell us something about them?
On the leadership team we have my dad, Anil Lala, who is an excellent product person. While we have tied up with some of the biggest fan manufactures over the world, someone like him has had even them push their boundaries to achieve extraordinary quality, longevity and reliability. He comes from the manufacturing background and the fact that we have such a range of premium product is all credited to him.
My mom, Sangeeta Lala, is from the hospitality background and she heads to retail.
She’s a real people’s person, and has navigated through retail and sales like a BOSS!
8. What is your idea of team formulation? What type of qualities do you search for in your team?
We look at people who are passionate and come with some value having the potential to be groomed into much more. We like people who take initiative, who can make decisions and are tactical. He looks at people who understand the business end-to-end and at some point they can head their own team.
9. What are your growth or expansion plans for the next 2 or 5 years?
We have already gone beyond the Indian borders and we plan to continue expanding demographic as well as on the product line to keep things fresh and address more markets.
All this while we hadn’t offered the option of customisation, one of the reasons we were able to scale. We are looking to offer products where you look at different permutation and combinations and add your own creativity to them. This would also include product add-on which would make the products smarter.
10. Where do you see yourself 10 years down the line?
The go-to fan brand in India. Fanzart can also be personified with aspirational, trustworthy and a – must have a brand – in the country.
11. Have you risen any funding yet? Are you looking for the same?
No, we have not risen any funding. And have not thought about raising any funding.
12. Please share your incubation days struggle issues while setting up this venture, and how did you resolve them?
Fans come under last mile purchase.
After people have spent a lot of their interior budgets, for them to take fan – which is conventionally 2000 to 3000 and required multiple in number – and make them a lot more expensive. Initially, during the incubation days we weren’t sure how the market would react to this.
We resolved this through perseverance, a beautiful experience centre, premium quality products, gaining the trust of Architects and Interior Designer and introducing the right designs time and again.
13. What is your idea of stress management?
To manage stress, you should socialise, catch a movie from time to time. Involve yourself in some physical activity like sports, where you can break a sweat and have fun at the same time.
Reading a book is a great way to escape work life and manage stress.
14. Where would you like to escape to for a holiday?
Escape for a Holiday, I would love to Scuba Dive in the Great Barrier Reef, which I have done before and is a beautiful experience.
Sky Diving would be the next thing to tick off my bucket list.
15. Whom do you consider your idol/role model or biggest motivator and why?
My role model and biggest motivator – I’d say, my dad – he’s managed to go from absolutely nothing to becoming something despite the fact that life has thrown him all kinds of googlies. He still has a great attitude towards life and towards people, he is great at handling relationship and genuinely cares for people.
There are stories wherein he’s provided a platform or opportunity for people who just never expected to have that in life.
16. What makes entrepreneurs different from service class professionals?
The differentiating factors of entrepreneurs from service class professionals are – Hunger, Curiosity and Tenacity.
17. Which part of your life would you like to rewrite if given a chance to restart with your career today?
My IIT Coaching, would not have done it. Haha
18. How has being an entrepreneur affected your family & Social life?
There are times where I go under a rock, there are times where I am severely jet-lagged, and timings are up and down. But, for family and close friends, I will always make that time simply because of no regrets.
19. Is there anything, you’d like to say to our readers or upcoming entrepreneurs?
Readers are one, but to upcoming entrepreneurs for sure. It is not necessary to fit in, its necessary to keep asking why. It is perfectly okay to question things and sound stupid while doing so – IT’S OKAY – nobody cares, and neither should you. Take it one step at a time and make sure your next day is better than the previous. Most importantly, care about the bigger things in life, if something is not going to bother you a year from now, don’t brood over it. And lastly, Time is Currency.
20. Tell us something about your education & family background.
I am an Electrical Engineer from The North Eastern University, Boston and a Stanford certified entrepreneur. Dad’s always been entrepreneurial, he has always managed whenever there was a setback, he’s always managed to transition very well and address newer problems. He has always recycled his entrepreneurial cycle.
My mum is from the hospitality background, she has managed to in vibe the fact that we need to humble making us hospitable to other.
So, I’d say I come for an entrepreneurial, fearless, humble and hospitable family
21. Why do you think start-ups are so vulnerable to the external business environment? What according to you are the threats to their stability?
There are so many reasons why start-ups don’t work. It could be product-market fit, the others are perseverance, timing, execution is big. Sometimes, when the time comes you don’t have the team or the right people around you.
Funding and deep pockets play a role. Too much funding or lack of funding.
People always want great companies and not great products but when you start a company it usually piggybacks of, of a great product to become a great company which has a lot more.
The whole equation needs to be right for things to work in other to be able to stand up against the bigger players and be successful.
22. Do you consider yourself successful and by what means do you measure success?
The world has been measuring start-ups by exits, which is one way to look at it. By funding – which is not necessarily the best way to measure it.
Success in a journey and not a destination or a check mark. I think there are things that you be successful at anything that you are not. Every day, every month and every year there are things that have gone well for you and things that have not but it’s not a status, it’s an ongoing thing and you have to keep adding.
Do I consider myself successful, my answer to this would be both yes and no.
By what mean, I think one of the reasons I could say yes is that today, people are familiar with the name Fanzart as a name now.
One of the parameters I would measure success is by trust – especially because in India trust is a very big thing – and we have become a trusted brand among Architects and Interior designers and we hope to keep replicating that.
So, I would say that success is a measure of whether you have achieved your objective and goals, it being short term or long term.
Address: Fanzart, 100 Feet Road, Opposite Girias, Indiranagar, Bangalore – 560038
Phone: 8884115684 (Tarun Lala), 080- 41512199, 9448372004